In this interview, our CTO Mathias Maier talks about the Blockpit Dev-Team, how it is organized and how the application procedure works. We also share some insight on the values we share as a team and how we have progressed throughout the years. Find out more about our application procedure in our previous blogpost.
What size is the dev-team? Who does it consist of in terms of functions?
Our dev-team consists of five developers, two of which are fullstack, one is frontend and one is a UX/UI designer. I collaborate closely with them. Together we take care of the frontend applications as well as the backend APIs and crawlers. The whole team works at the Tabakfabrik in Linz, Austria, and, if necessary, home office can be an option too.
How is the dev-team organized? For what reason did you decide on the form of organization? What are the advantages and disadvantages?
We define our main goals through a three-month long OKR (Objectives and Key Results). Every two weeks, we break the long-term goals down into individual sprints and categorize them as milestones, stories and tasks. We work on them and, ultimately, reflect on them after the sprint.
During our daily stand-ups, we keep track of what each person is working on, discuss dependencies and solve problems together. For project setups and bigger features we also use the method of mob- or pair-programming. By doing this we find solutions quicker and keep everyone updated at the same time.
Due to the fact that we work in an agile manner, it sometimes happens that we have to take care of more immediate tasks that are not in the sprint-schedule and keep the other ones on hold.
In comparison to other teams, what makes you as a team special?
Compared to others, we are a very well-coordinated team and each member knows exactly what the other members’ strengths and weaknesses are. We know how to use them efficiently and support each other. We also like to celebrate our success by having a beer together. Aside from that, we value our flat hierarchy and good humor.
How is the dev-team incorporated in the application procedure?
During the second round of the application procedure, a member of the dev-team will be part of the interview and get to know the prospective employee. Aside from that, projects and coding exercises of the applicant are thoroughly examined by the dev-team.
Is there a specific on-boarding procedure for new employees? How are they integrated into the team?
During our on-boarding process I talk to the new colleague about technical topics and explain our projects to them. The OKR-representative then talks them through the functions of OKR/scrum/kanban and the HR-manager gives them an overview of organizational issues.
The initial tickets or tasks are done through pair-programming to get started with our projects.
From the very start, a new colleague is part of all of our team-based activities like dev-meetings, stand-ups, jourfix and team events to feel integrated into our team and get a hold of current topics. Questions are welcome at any time and supoort is given by every single team member.
Aside from professional qualifications, what else do you consider when looking for new developers?
Autonomy and motivation to make the best of our applications are the most important factors to us. We also consider an interest in technology and knowledge about cryptocurrencies valuable qualities.
Which technological challenges are you facing?
We have many external dependencies and face many changes in the field of cryptocurrencies. This includes the implementation of new, tokenized assets, like shares and precious metals, and also towards the regulatory framework of the crypto-sphere, which are different in every single country.
Which technologies are you working with?
In our team we are working with PHP, Laravel, JS, TypeScript, Angular, Docker, MySQL and Ionic.
How have you developed technologically since the early days of Blockpit?
The main tech-stack has not changed since the beginning. However, our development environment has changed. Projects, for example, have been dockerized and applications are now structured in a modular way.